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Intergenerational Transmission of Inflation Aversion: Theory and Evidence

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  • Farvaque, Etienne

    (Université de Lille 1)

  • Mihailov, Alexander

    (University of Reading)

Abstract

This paper studies the transmission of preferences in an overlapping-generations model with heterogeneous mature agents characterized by different degrees of inflation aversion. We show how the dynamics of a society's degree of inflation aversion and the implied degree of central bank independence depend on the direction and speed of changes in the structure of the population's preferences, themselves a function of parent socialization efforts in response to observed inflation. We then construct a survey-based measure of inflation aversion and provide empirical support for our analytical and simulation results. Available cross-section evidence confirms that a nation's demographic structure, in particular variation in the share of retirees as a proxy for the more inflation-averse type, is a key determinant of inflation aversion, together with experience with past inflation and the resulting collective memory embodied in monetary institutions.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by IRISS at CEPS/INSTEAD in its series IRISS Working Paper Series with number 2009-11.

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Length: 36 pages
Date of creation: Sep 2009
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:irs:iriswp:2009-11

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Keywords: intergenerational transmi ; evolving preferences ; inflation aversion ; central bank independence ; collective memory;

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References

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  1. Edward Nelson, 2006. "Ireland and Switzerland: the jagged edges of the Great Inflation," Working Papers 2006-016, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis.
  2. Sáez-Martí, María & Sjögren, Anna, 2005. "Peers and Culture," Working Paper Series 642, Research Institute of Industrial Economics.
  3. Bisin, A. & Verdier, T., 1999. "A model of cultural transmission, voting and political ideology," DELTA Working Papers 1999-13, DELTA (Ecole normale supérieure).
  4. Hayo, Bernd, 1998. "Inflation culture, central bank independence and price stability," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 14(2), pages 241-263, May.
  5. Christopher Crowe & Ellen E. Meade, 2007. "The Evolution of Central Bank Governance around the World," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 21(4), pages 69-90, Fall.
  6. Stefan Krause & Fabio Mendez, 2003. "Policy Makers' Preferences, Party Ideology, and the Political Business Cycle," Emory Economics 0319, Department of Economics, Emory University (Atlanta).
  7. Jon Faust, 1992. "Whom can we trust to run the Fed? Theoretical support for the founders' views," International Finance Discussion Papers 429, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  8. Bullard, James & Waller, Christopher J, 2004. "Central Bank Design in General Equilibrium," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 36(1), pages 95-113, February.
  9. Aleksander Berentsen & Carlo Strub, 2008. "Central Bank Design with Heterogeneous Agents," IEW - Working Papers 365, Institute for Empirical Research in Economics - University of Zurich.
  10. Luca Antonio Ricci & Pierpaolo Benigno, 2009. "The Inflation-Unemployment Trade-Off At Low Inflation," IMF Working Papers 09/34, International Monetary Fund.
  11. Brumm, Harold J., 2002. "Inflation and Central Bank independence revisited," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 77(2), pages 205-209, October.
  12. Krause, Stefan & Méndez, Fabio, 2008. "Institutions, arrangements and preferences for inflation stability: Evidence and lessons from a panel data analysis," Journal of Macroeconomics, Elsevier, vol. 30(1), pages 282-307, March.
  13. George A. Akerlof & William R. Dickens & George L. Perry, 1996. "The Macroeconomics of Low Inflation," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 27(1), pages 1-76.
  14. Daniels, Joseph P. & VanHoose, David D., 2006. "Openness, the sacrifice ratio, and inflation: Is there a puzzle?," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 25(8), pages 1336-1347, December.
  15. Jayadev, Arjun, 2006. "Differing preferences between anti-inflation and anti-unemployment policy among the rich and the poor," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 91(1), pages 67-71, April.
  16. de Jong, Eelke, 2002. "Why are price stability and statutory independence of central banks negatively correlated? The role of culture," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 18(4), pages 675-694, November.
  17. Bisin, A. & Verdier, T., 1997. "The Economics of Cultural Transmission and the Dynamics of Preferences," DELTA Working Papers 97-03, DELTA (Ecole normale supérieure).
  18. Okina, Kunio & Shirakawa, Masaaki & Shiratsuka, Shigenori, 2001. "The Asset Price Bubble and Monetary Policy: Japan's Experience in the Late 1980s and the Lessons: Background Paper," Monetary and Economic Studies, Institute for Monetary and Economic Studies, Bank of Japan, vol. 19(S1), pages 395-450, February.
  19. Scheve, Kenneth, 2004. "Public Inflation Aversion and the Political Economy of Macroeconomic Policymaking," International Organization, Cambridge University Press, vol. 58(01), pages 1-34, February.
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Cited by:
  1. Ehrmann, Michael & Tzamourani, Panagiota, 2009. "Memories of high inflation," Working Paper Series 1095, European Central Bank.
  2. Paolo Verme, 2010. "Happiness, deprivation and the alter ego," Working Papers 155, ECINEQ, Society for the Study of Economic Inequality.
  3. Hayat, Muhammad Azmat & Farvaque, Etienne, 2012. "Public attitudes towards central bank independence: Lessons from the foundation of the ECB," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 28(4), pages 512-523.
  4. Muhammad Azmat Hayat & Etienne Farvaque, 2012. "Public Attitudes towards Central Bank Independence: Lessons From the Foundation of the ECB," Working Papers hal-00988169, HAL.

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